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tv   Consider This  Al Jazeera  February 25, 2014 9:00am-10:01am EST

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a major drug kingpin captured in mexico, plus the u.s. military wants to shrink. is that a good idea? also will pope francis succeed where others haven't. and the moon takes a massive hit. should we be worried here on earth. hello, i'm antonio mora, welcome to "consider this." here is more of what is ahead. the arrest of guzman ends
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the long reign of the most powerful drug trafficker in the world. in ukraine the president has been impeached. interm government has issued an arrest warrant. francis is the first pope not to ever have studied in rome, worked in rome, or spent significant time in rome. >> he intended to lead a very different church. ♪ >> we gin with the arrest of possibly the most notorious mexican drug cartel leader, who shocked us since his escape in 2001. but what does his arrest really mean for the drug war and the flow of drugs into the u.s. his arrest comes just as the mexican president was featured
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on the cover of time magazine with the headline "saving mexico," but is this really mexico's osama bin laden moment? for more we're joined by a reporter from tlos angeles time. sam good to have you back on the show. you wrote you don't believe to coincidences when it comes to mexican politics. as we just said the mexican president is on the cover of time magazine and el chopo is arrested. coincidence. >> i think when you cover mexican politics you don't ever believe in coincidence. but this is an historic moment in mexico, there is no doubt about that. this guy is huge -- he has a
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huge organization. he is also the poster child for mexican impunity. the fact that he could flaunt this for 13 years. sneak out of a prison in a laundry basket and then be on the run for 13 years, during which time he got married very publicly his wife came to los angeles to have twins. there's the feeling that this guy -- the end of el chopo which we're now seeing is kind of like the end of an era. the end of these grand leader with his capture i think perhaps we may be seeing an end to that. >> the mexican president has been criticized for his handling of the drug war. and it seems that every mexican president ends up taking at least one kingpin down.
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do you this there will be more aggressive policing in mexico, which has seen as so corrupt out there where the drug cartels operate. >> for 70 years, the party that ran the country had these very strict rules. they were unwritten rules, but one was each president gets to topple some important powerful figure. sometimes it was a union leader, but it was not a -- a real campaign to rid the country of these folks. it was more like a -- i always thought -- took as it kind of a symbolic thing more than anything else. that began to change once the preloss power was elected, and you began to see unwritten rules of the mexican state being thrown out, and you began to see other people being arrested.
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vacinte fox arrested the leader of the gulf cartel, and then calderon has a real long string of folks that he either had killed or imprisoned, so i suspect this is going to be begin to rewrite the rules of mexican politics in administrations which is only a good thing. i would also say that this is showing now -- what we're beginning to see, i think is a real change in capacity, ability by the mexican state to be able to go after these guys. when this war started, what it showed was the complete inability of the mexican state to do anything about rogue actors, running around their country beheading people, massive gun fights in the street, and the mexican state seemed incompetent and
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incapable, and now we're seeing little by little a kind of a capacity building thing, an infrastructure building -- the morale boost of getting some of these really big guys, particularly of course chopo now, this is a really important step in this maturation of the mexican state. >> and you say the brutality has been absolutely horrific. and you actually seem to think that this might not em-bolden the other cartels -- >> oh, no, i think that very well may happen. this war kicked off in 2003, chopo had just been out of prison for two years by that point. he decides, hey, i'm going to take on his territory, he goes after that area, thinking it is vulnerable.
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incorrectly it turns out. the gulf cartel repels the attack and ever since then we have the war that kicked off -- >> so do you think the war will just get worse? >> i'm not sure if it will get worse, but certain areas that were settled issues if you would like may now be in play again. >> and will his departure actually hurt the cartel, or will people just take over his role? >>, you know, people will take over his role. but, look, i really think that kingpins are kingpins for a reason. i think these drug organizations are kind of meritocracies, because they are very good at their jobs. they have a ruthlessness, but they are great at logistics and
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organizational capacity. think of what he achieved. it's a remarkable achievement sending tons of drugs across a very heavily gourded border using criminals and drug addicts and other unreliable actors, and he was able to do it for years and years. i think a lot of times these people are not as easily replaced and people think. everybody can kill ruthlessly. that's not a difficult quality to find in a drug cartel, but the logistics and organizational capacity is not so easy to find. and one case in point is the tijuana cartel. they were absolutely blood thirsty throughout the '80s, and the two leaders were arrested, and once those guys were gone,
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their ability -- the organizational ability and logistical ability were not so easily replaced. and that cartel, the king of all cartels for many years eventually disintegrated and it's a shadow of its former self. >> let's hope that is the case here. thank you. >> thank you. chuck hagel is recommending some very steep budget cuts for the military including shrinking the number of active level troops to numbers not seen since world war ii. he say it's for a build of technology build up and special operations security. >> the assumption that is being made in the pentagon, and it is almost laughable if it wasn't so
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serious, is they don't believe the united states will involvement it's a in a ground war of any consequence again. those assumptions have been made after world war ii, korea, vietnam, and the cold war, and every single time they have been proven wrong. and here we are making that sames a search shun. >> joining us now is a man who hooz covered the military, pentagon, congress, and politics, kevin good to have you back on the show. secretary hangel insists the plan will not jeopardize america's security, but not everyone is buying that. what do you think is the bottom line? are they making a choice of going for a more technological force rather than personnel? >> yes, more technological, i don't think rather than personnel, i think this is the cost of doing business today.
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the general's comments, there is a lot of history there. this fray that the pentagon is no longer going to involve itself in a land war goes back two defense secretaries ago, and it was really a comment to -- to project the future coming out of afghanistan and iraq. of course it's possible that the united states is going to be involved in a land war eventually, and of course history has shown that every decade or two decades away, but i think what a lot of people have learned in the last decade is if that's the big worry that this pentagon and the army knows how to plus up to do something like that. but reality is the wars are over. this is the first post-war budget request really, and that's what you see. it's not just a question of replacing personnel costs are technology, it's -- or replacing
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people with technology, it's the cost per person as well. inside the budget the pentagon for about the third year in a row is begging congress to reduce some of those costs, lower the pay raises for troops, the health care costs for troops, things that congress has just refused to do, so something has to give. >> i'll get to that in a minute, but as you were staying history shows a substantial conflict every 20 years, smaller ones every five years and some people is saying this will prevent us from being able to deal with two significant wars at the time, and it might prevent us from being as aggressive as me might need to be in certain circumstances. >> well, again, the idea of two wars at once, that's the cold war. >> but -- or even afghanistan
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and iraq? >> well, we did take care of those two wars at the same time, and it was done with an all volunteer army. the really worry wasn't could we fight two gigantic wars side to side, it was could we continue iraq and move into afghanistan with just the all-volunteer force that we have. this country didn't come anywhere close to a draft. >> right. >> so that kind of fear is such a think tank-y strategy room fear. and that's another reality, it has really been the call and call of the pentagon is we have to build a force that can deal with the reality that we're most likely to face now, and can be ready to plus up to things in the future. but there are two different
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questions. can the united states fight what it needed -- what we may need to fight? okay. if it's two wars at once? that's one question. the other question is should we keep a force that is ready to do that -- >> at all times, yes. let's go down through some of the controversial elements . . . here is something else secretary hagel said on monday. >> although these recommendations do not cut anyone's pay, i realize they will be controversial. congress has taken some important steps in recent years to control the growth and compensation spending, but we must do more. >> how does the military really feel about all of this. you have written about how there is more grumbling in the
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military, and how mh harder life is, this will make life more expensive for the average member of our military. >> true. the a-10 war hog for example is a beloved plane and it has been talked about for a couple of years that it is going to have to go. what is to replace it, the f-35. another troubled program. so that's going to go on for several years. what happens now, we'll see. this is the first time the pentagon and congress will face off on that. i think when it comes to the pay raises, that always is trouble. this is congress in a midterm year, they are talking about a 1% raise, not a cut to the raise, and i think the pentagon said, well, we'll freeze the generals and admirals. they are not cutting into those flag officers more than was
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projected, which also could have brought savings, for the navy side, you didn't mention the lcs ship, which was supposed to be future of the navy, and the pentagon is asking the navy to basically go back to the drawing board. that's good news for ship builders and planners -- >> right, but the bad news is for military bases that might be cut. i have to ask you very quickly, do you think under those circumstances this will make it through congress? >> i think chunks will, i think chunk won't. i think brak will not. the lcs buy -- the number of those ships is still to be determined. you have to give credit to the pentagon for putting a lot of items on the table when people thought the big ticket items aren't there. they neutralized one item when
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they said they are not going to cut one of the 11 aircraft carrier air strikes this year, but if congress tries to push it next year that's what they would go for. the question is how much of this can happen under the radar, and how much can congress stomach, or how much will make it in to the new, when there are a lot of assumptions about congress, versus what anybody in america cares about -- >> it does have to do with our security. and obviously they have to deal with new international and budget tear -- budgetary realities. coming up ukraine's president packs up and flees. so how is he still claiming to hold on to power. and we're tracking the top
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stories on the web. >> we'll test the conventional wisdom on the u.s. drinking age, and whether it should be lowered. and while you are watching join the conversation . . . real reporting that brings you the world. >> this is a pretty dangerous trip. >> security in beirut is tight. >> more reporters. >> they don't have the resources to take the fight to al shabaab. >> more bureaus, more stories. >> this is where the typhoon came ashore. giving you a real global perspective like no other can. >> al jazeera, nairobi. >> on the turkey-syria border. >> venezuela. >> beijing. >> kabul. >> hong kong. >> ukraine. >> the artic. real reporting from around the world. this is what we do. al jazeera america.
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over the course after weekend, the disposed ukrainian over the course of a weekend, deposed ukrainian president went to heard of a nation to a fugitive wanted for mass murder, as the country begins to recover from months of protests that turned violent in the past week, the former president is on the run, and the former government is left to try to recover. joining us is global post's europe editor, a former npr bureau chief in mow -- moscow.
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on friday there was a deal made, then on saturday all of a sudden he is deposed on sunday nobody knows where he is, on on monday he is facing charges, wanted for mass murder. how did this happen so quickly? >> he lost control of the situation. what happened is -- whether it was yanukovych who ordered the use of force, the riot police were essentially shooting civilians, some of them armed but most of them unarmed, and this created so much outrage that it essentially was the end of yanukovych. >> where do you think he is, and does he have anywhere to run? >> i think he could go to
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russia. i suspect that he is in the russian-leased port, the home of the black sea fleet. he disappeared in a town on the black sea that is very close. i suspect he has been risked away by russian special forces of some kind. >> now that the opposition is in charge and elections have been set for may, will they be able to work together because with saw that the opposition was pretty divided, in fact some of the opposition leaders were booed on friday for agreeing to the deal that lead to him leaving. >> that's right. there are a lot of radicalized protesters who have risked their lives and health to essentially protest and counter the riot police and get rid of yanukovych. it is a very tricky situation, nevertheless, i think ukraine has had a very momentous
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occasion. they got rid of an essentially criminal leader. and the new president has been acting very quickly. parliament has been acting very quickly to pass laws, tomorrow on tuesday, they are supposed to form an interim government. we will see what happens. but i think the big question was whether the new interim president would be able to exert authority over the state institutions, in particular the police, which is a pretty corrupt force, a lot of the officers loyal to the former president yanukovych. and you see these self f -- self-defense forces guarding parliament, conducting traffic at intersections, and you see the police coming back and taking up their roles as well,
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and i think that's a good sign. >> protesters ended up walking into yanukovych mansion and what they found points to just incredible corruption. how big of an issue is corruption in ukraine? >> i think it's very big. one of the things that surprises me is we are in this the west are surprised by this. i covered the presidential election when yanukovych was elected, and i remember him giving his victory speech when the exit polls werement coming in. he won by just a hair, but he wanted to establish himself and act very quickly, so he called a news conference, a lot of reporters were there, it was in downtown kiev and you could see his supporters, some of the politicians and businessmen sitting around round tables in
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this large sort of banquet hall, and they just had a criminal look about them. this was from the very start a criminal group, essentially, i think. and the mansion, the boat, the car collection, the private zoo, all of that now shows essentially to most ukrainians and the world that this was the case. >> ula yulia tymoshenko was also released, over the weekend. and the division in ukraine has so often been painted as a battle between rush and the west, and internal battle between western side and the eastern side. do you see this as a win for the west? this >> it is absolutely a win for the west. it's a conflict that has been
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going on for a long time on lots of levels. ukraine is split geographically and in population, essentially 50-50. so it definitely is that, but it was more than that, i think the yanukovych administration and regime was incredibly corrupt. it cracked down against free speech, oversaw a massive explosion of corruption and jailed yulia yulia tymoshenko -- >> a quick question for you. russia has said it will not deal with mutiny-eers, what will they do?
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>> they will use some armed force to try to influence events. so far thankfully that hasn't been the case, but we often find russian's actions mysterious, why would he try to push the country to the verge of civil war? i write in my book that a lot of russian actions that seem confusing to us are based on practical reason according to their own logic. putin makes decisions that are not in russia's interest, but in his interest. he didn't want ukraine to join the west and he was willing to do everything possible to prevent that. the prime minister has called the new leaders -- their coming to power, the result of an armed mutiny. they are trying to undermine the new pro-western leaders. i think they will act according
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to their old play book, but hopefully there's a window for the new authorities to really try to change what has been going on in ukraine. >> again, the book is "russians the people behind the power," great to have you on the show. thank you. >> thank you. protests continued in venezuela on monday. hundreds of thousands of anti-government protesters filled the streets on saturday in the biggest demonstration so far. meanwhile opposition leader is calling on protesters not to give up. lopez's family says the government has offered to send him into exile, but that the deal was rejected. so is venezuela a country with the world's largest petroleum
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reserves heading the way of ukraine? or will the president succeed in riding out the demonstrations? for more i'm joined by the senior director of policy, and founder and editor in chief of america's quarterly. good to have you back on the show. >> good to be here. >> we just saw people's power having incredible effect in ukraine in overthrowing the government. will that happen in venezuela? >> two things are different. in ukraine you had a series of diplomats that tried to put some pressure on the president internationally. there is no such courage in venezuela for that. whether it's brazil, argentina, columbia, they haven't spoken out. you don't see that level of engagement. >> what little speaking out there is, is split in latin
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america. some countries support the president, some support the opposition. >> it is split, and also raising concerns about freedom of expression has really been quite weak. that is one thing. the second is this is an opposition that has been asking for this for a long time. but the president has not shown any inclination to compromise. if there is a change it will probably going to be within the government it's a. ever time there has been opposition, this government has doubled down. >> let's stick to ukraine for a second, is there any protest -- chance that the protests -- yanukovych wasn't willing to compromise at first, but will this happen in venezuela? >> it's unclear what their end
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game is in this. certainly in the past when it was the chavez government they attempted to lead that mass protest that would lead to the collapse of the government. they have already heard them talk about not stepping down, not negotiating with the government while this repression lasts. >> how unified is the opposition in venezuela? it does seem to be more unified than ukraine, but there have been some who are more moderate, the former presidential candidate who came versus close to beating the president last year, was supposed to be meeting with him on monday. do you think there are cracks in the opposition? this >> i think this is a very unified opposition. there were divisions when these protests started, but that represented two different
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strategies it's a. but increasingly that came much more difficult, because you really did need some sort of populous expression on the streets to express the legitimate frustrations and elections simply weren't sufficient for that. but today he said he would not negotiate with the government while this the opposition continued and as long as lopez remains in prison. so i think you are looking at a very unified front. >> and that is leading to cracks in the government coalition, because now you have the governor in the state where protests started weeks ago, who is now backing off. he has now come out and said he doesn't believe that -- he is opposed to the way the government has put down peaceful protests with weapons, and he said no one is allowed to use violence, and has called for all
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political prisoners to be released. >> this is somewhat similar to -- to ukraine as you mentioned. here you are beginning to see some of the president's cofragment. the question will be what happens with the military as the repression increases, and these protests are sustained, which i'm sure they will be. whether they will decide to go along with this government and enough is enough. >> how about cuba, they are saying that cuba is involved in all levels of the government and cuba needs venezuela to be on their side. the cubans can't afford to lose him as an ally. >> venezuela represents 15% of
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cuba's gdp. that comes from the hundreds of thousands of barrels of oil per day it gives to cuba. in turn cuba has send doctors, trainers -- >> military. >> military, spies all of that. so even the -- >> the thugs who are violent. >> were very much based on cuba. they need that lifeline. >> is there a danger there that that might increase the violence? in >> i think the cubans are going to try to remain there as long as they can, and prop up this government. and he is their man. he is their guy. >> he has made noises of trying to meet with president obama. any chance that will happen? >> no, no chance.
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nor should it. >> thank you. >> thanks. >> now let's check in with hermela. >> one of the arguments we hear from people who say the u.s. drinking should be lowered is that it would teach young people to drink responsibly, and often they site europe as an example. but a new report says keeping the age to 21 actually saves lives. a 2011 study cited in a boston university report shows 36% of high school sophomores in the u.s. said they had been drunk in their lifetimes, compared with 4 7% in europe. and heavy alcohol use was more prevalent in 35 european nations than in the u.s. and there are 5 to 9% less deaths from vehicle accidents
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since the drinking age was raised. and now to your comments . . . you can read at the website. antonio back to you. >> thanks hermela. pope benedict struggled to control major church scandals, so will pope francis succeed where others failed? and a crushing blow to the moon.
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other nations with power from priestly child abuse in the u.s. and other nations, to
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power struggles within the catholic church, crime and corruption at the vatican bank, pope francis has his hands full. a documentary looks at the scandals within the church that francis has had to try to manage since the took the job. mean while expectations for the new pope could not be higher. >> francis is the first pope not to ever have studied in roam, worked in rome, or spent significant time in rome. he's an outsider. >> he is a man that seems to be able to touch people, or draw them out, or give a sense of hope. one has to worry if he is going to be able to live up to the legacy he has created. >> for more i'm joined by anthony thompson director of the documentary. good to have you with us.
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>> thank you. >> high hopes for pope francis, but when benedict the 16th came pope weren't there expectations that he would clean up the church as well? >> absolutely. that same good friday address that he gave five days before the pope died, [ inaudible ] has he then was promised to clean the filth in the church, and i have no doubt in my mind that he was thinking specifically of the big case we were dealing with, and that was the promise he made, but unfortunately he couldn't do the things he -- he wanted to do. >> masielle was the head of the he gones of christ, and he had a very long history where documents had been sent to the
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vatican, calling attention to his behavior. he ended up having six children out of wed lock, he ended up abusing a score of children including some of his own biological children. it's an incredible story that you tell, and it wasn't just pope benedict. it was two popes before him. >> yeah, that's true. it's extraordinary, because the complaints were first brought against him in the mid-50s, and he was do nating large amounts of money to individuals and the church in general, so all of these problems were overlooked, and it is a dreadful story. >> and pope benedict was the problem -- because he was seen as a bulldog, as a very tough man, a very doctrinary cardinal. what happened when he became
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pope? >> he was a poured a administrator. he was -- as you say very strong on doctrine, but his background was difficult, because he had never been a priest for 10, 15, 20 years -- he had one year that he was a priest, but it was a year he was studying for another doctorate, and it was that lacking on how to deal with people, that lack of great charisma that pope francis has that was a problem. and he delegated so much of his church to other people. >> and the hope, of course, is that francis as we saw in that chunk of the documentary that played earlier, was a big outsider, and will have the strength to deal with these
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issues, including the child abuse issues in the us. let's play part of a horrific story you helped expose, the woman was eight years old when she was raped by a priest in a church, and described what happens immediately after. >> and i just sat there because i didn't know what i should do, and eventually, i realized that there was blood on my legs, and there was blood on the new purple shorts that my grandma had given to me for my birthday, so i wiped the blood off with some of the holy water, and i went and i sat outside under this big tree, and i was just crying, because i was in pain, and i didn't understand what had happened to me, and i was scared. as a child who went to catholic school, we were taught that the priest is basically the closest you will ever get to god, and
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for me, when i was raped by that priest, it just pulled my entire foundation out from under me. everything was just taken away in that day. >> eventually the father was convicted of sexual assault on another child, and died in prison. monica never got her day in court because of the statute of limitations. but the diocese of milwaukee sued her to recover $14,000 in legal expenses. >> so she gets raped as a child and then the archdiocese ends up suing her. >> that's right. >> she believes that was meant to intimidate her to not speak out. does your reporting support that? >> absolutely. there was definite aim to intimidate, and one wonders how
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many people who had that experience when they were very young were intimidated and didn't come forward. didn't want to drag it all up gin. when something like this happens when they are eight, nine, or ten, it takes them years even to confront their abuser. it's not something that can be dealt with immediately. and the important point to make is this, we know this kind of child abuse exists in in almost every organization. there is some of it somewhere. but when it's your priest as monica expensed so beautifully there, that makes it mortarable, because he is someone between you and god, and it is a shattering thing to happen. >> you address the bureaucracy in rome and the hypocrisy, and
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you talk about the butler for pope benedict who gave out a series of documents. and you talk about the vatican bank. and the pope has provided oversight for all of the economic affairs. it will include cardinals and lay people, because the scandal here again is tremendous. all sorts of money disappearing and money laundering. >> that's right. it's a tremendous problem. but he has taken other steps as well, as we say in the film, by october of last year, he was seeking to close 900 accounts. he appointed a commission within three or four weeks of his election to investigate the vatican bank. he is serious about making these changes, and he is a man of great strength. >> let's hope he manages to do
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what he has set out to do. again, the documentary is named "secret of the vatican," and airs on tuesday night. thank you very much. >> thank you. >> now a sad update, we recently reported on the lady in number 6. she was believed to be the oldest holocaust survivor. she passed away at 110. she was placed in a nazi camp and used for propaganda purposes. she even found a silver lining at the camp, her music. >> i knew that we will play, and i proceeded well if i can play, it can't be so terrible. the music. the music. music is the first place of art. it brings us on an island with
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peace, beauty, and love. music is -- is a dream. music is a dream! >> alice will be missed. this weekend we will bring you our interview with the filmmakers of the lady in number 6, along with the other oscar nominated documentarians. we have a special edition of for your consideration, it debuts saturday at 10:00 eastern. straight ahead why so many of our coworkers are making the rest of us sick. our data dive is next. combat tactics >> every little podunk wants their tank and their bazooka... >> with s.w.a.t. raids on the rise... >> when it goes wrong, it goes extremely wrong... >> what's the price for militarizing our police
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>> they killed evan dead >> faul lines, al jazeera america's hard hitting... >> there blocking the door... >> ground breaking... >> we have to get out of here... >> truth seeking... break though investigative documentary series... new episode, deadly force only on al jazeera america
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todd's data dive tries to tough it out. more than 1 out of 4 americans polled said they always go to today's data dive is more
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than one in four americans polled said they go to work sick. more than a thousand people from a public health group. so why do they risk effecting others? many feel deadlines, and other conditions. and then there are freelancers who if they don't work they don't get paid. california disability management coalition found that workers who come in with the flu create a big domino effect. the vast majority of workers, 94% say they take precautions before approaching their sick colleagues. four out of five use hand sanitizers, and sick workers are
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being judged by almost everyone. two thirds of their colleagues think those who show up sick are hard workers. however, sometimes the most selfless thing you can do is be selfish with your health and get some rest. coming up a big asteroid smashes into the moon. should we will worried? >> al jazeera america is a straight-forward news channel. >> its the most exciting thing to happen to american journalism in decades. >> we believe in digging deep. >> its unbiased, fact-based, in-depth journalism. >> you give them the facts, dispense with the fluff and get straight to the point. >> i'm on the ground every day finding stories that matter to you.
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>> in new orleans... >> seattle bureau... >> washington... >> detroit... >> chicago... >> nashville... >> los angeles... >> san francisco... >> al jazeera america, take a new look at news.
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>> this is the real deal man... a big collision has put a new crater on the moon. we have gotten footage of what a collision has put a new crater on the moon.
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an 880-pound asteroid blasted a hole in the moon in september. it caused a bright and lasting explosion that could be seen from the earth. do we need to be worried about the same thing happening here? derrek good to see you as always. as an astronomer it must have been exciting to see the creation of a new crater. >> it is always exciting to see something like this, it reminds us as come met hunter dave levi once said, that the solar system is still under construction. and unfortunately we can survey on a regular basis now to record these events. >> the force of ill pact is believed to be the equivalent of 16 tons of dynamite. if an object that size managed
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to make it through our atmosphere and hit the earth, what would the consequences be? >> well, if we can eliminate the idea of it falling into the ocean or some of the less populated regions on the planet, even there we would see a large crater created. if it happened over a heavily populated area, it could cause wide-spread destruction. unfortunately there aren't as many of these events taking place as there was in the early history, so we haven't seen anything like this in recorded history, except for one that happened back in 1908, and again, last year, we saw something over russia where a large item exploded over the city. >> right. both of those happened in this russia. what else can we learn about potential collisions here on earth from what we saw that
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happened on the moon. >> this gives us an opportunity to check to see how well our equations are to be able to track objects like this, and identify where they are headed. nasa and other agencies around the world have done a really great job of being able to identify the very largest items of these. we don't expect the earth to be struck by anything very large over the next 100 years or so, but there are smaller objects, and we need to identify them early enough to prevent them from striking the earth. >> and then we ask do we have anything we can do? >> there are a couple of mitigation possibilities that range everywhere from dropping a
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nuclear war head on one of these, to break it up into smaller pieces. maybe small enough pieces to minimize the kind of damage that could be done, out to something as interesting as sprinkling a white material like sugar or flour on one side of an asteroid to heating would cause it to move off course, but these all require that we can identify the object early enough that we can take action. best defense is a good offense. >> right. let's switch topics california has been suffering through the worst drought in its history. you can apparently see some of the brown parched land from space, but now nasa, apparently can help? how? >> it can bring to bare the acids that it has on orbit that
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we can see the exing tent of the effects of the drought. those satellites can also help us understand the potential for snowmelt. we can also use the satellites to study the climate, if you will, the climatic condition changes that are taking place, and we can get better ideas on how the climate is changing, how we can better interact with a changing climate. >> nasa technology can also be able to help in this providing other ways to create fresh water in places like california and other places that are prone to drought. >> i think we can better identify the regions that are being effected, try to figure out how to perhaps mitigate some of those effects, but also --
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>> but there are -- there are some nasa technologies about recycling water that will be able to help create more fresh water. >> yes. there are technologies that can be used. nasa is using various technologies already on space stations, and on space substitute ls in -- shuttles in this the past. and that's always one of the best things to do is to begin to recycle what we already have. so yes, nasa has a number of technologies, and it's a great way to send our technology. >> you believe that's one of the reasons we need to keep funding nasa? >> i think the benefits we get from nasa, we get at a very, very cheap price about a penny per person across the country every year. >> it is great to have you on the show. thanks for joining us. >> thank you. >> the show may be over, but the
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